Grief and addiction share a common trait: denial. Denial is a very normal stage of the grief process; denying the loss of a person, place or thing is a typical first reaction when a person loses something valuable in his or her life.
However, with addiction, denial also plays a key role. In addictive behaviors, there is usually global denial regarding the addictive behaviors, and the impact of the behavior on others.
As a partner of an addict, denial can appear as overlooking your intuitions in the relationship that something doesn’t feel right. Underneath this denial, there is usually a lot of rationalizing, that is, talking yourself out of the gut feeling that something is very wrong.
This can be a survival mechanism that stems from your family of origin.
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